Rated 2.0 Junkie poet and playwright Miguel “Mikey” Piñero (excellently portrayed by Benjamin Bratt) says that he has to be bad to make his writing good. He steals, mainlines heroin, hustles, lives on the street, betrays his friends and makes multiple trips to prison. Is he serious here? Or merely deflecting bullets aimed at the very heart of his self-indulgent, recklessly criminal lifestyle? The film never makes it clear whether or not the Manhattan underbelly dweller and celebrated Puerto Rican precursor of rap and poetry slams has a real clue about the value and impact of his talent. For that misstep, the story is neither tragic nor heroic nor deeply dramatic. It evolves as a stream of nonlinear impressions that mostly screams “hard-hat area—tortured artist at work!” but fails to transcend that very cliché to illuminate Piñero’s character and lurid life. The story hits a few provocative notes in a sensory jam session that blurs the line between intrinsic and extrinsic inspiration before the weight of pop mythology crushes the wind from its lungs. Written and directed by Leon Ichaso (Sugar Hill, Crossover Dreams).